Previous Page Table of Contents Next Page



Occurs at medium to low altitudes in evergreen forests and riverine fringe forests. In Tanzania it is commonly found in the foothills of mountain ranges, in well-drained soils, and swamp and riverine areas. It has been successfully grown in South Africa, Cuba, and Puerto Rico (Francis ND).

Minimum Rainfall (mm):


Maximum Rainfall (mm):



Soil Requirements: Prefers moist, well-drained soils with subsoil moisture (Watkins 1960). K. anthotheca is found on fertile alluvial soils, stable, gently sloping riverbanks, and adjacent alluvial slopes.

Light Requirements: Moderately shade tolerant when young and moderately intolerant when older (Francis ND).

Influential Factors: Normally resistant to termites. Young trees are prone to damage from the shoot borer Tragocephala variagata (Watkins 1960). It is very sensitive to fire and frost. Browsing animals can destroy young plants or slow growth.


Means of Propagation: Seed, seedlings, stumps (24 months), transplants (9 to 12 months).

Seeds per kg:


Germination Length:

3-4 weeks

Seed Sources:

1500 TSH per kg - Silviculture Research Centre 1991/92.

Seed Treatments: It is reported that it is not possible to dry and store K. anthotheca seed, due to short seed viability. Storing seed for longer than 3 months is not recommended (RSCU 1992). Pretreatment of the seed is not necessary.

Seedling Management: The tree regenerates well by seed under a densely shaded canopy. When seedlings are grown in small containers they should be outplanted when they reach 30 cm and have fully developed compound leaves (Francis ND).

Nursery stock can be left to develop to a stripling or a bare-rooted stock with a long shoot (1 to 2 m). The root system is only slightly pruned off. Seedlings are stripped of leaves before being transported to the planting site to reduce transpiration losses (Nwoboshi 1982).


Planting Types: Used in intercropping.

Growth Factors: Fast growing.

Growth Cycle: A typical rotation is from 60 to 80 years. The tree fruits from March to July and sometimes later (Palgrave 1988). K. anthotheca is reported to be insect pollinated (Francis ND).

Management Systems: Light shade is recommended, possibly in a mixture with Melicia excelsa (Watkins 1960). Reported spacings are 5×5 m in South Africa and 2.4×2.4 m in Puerto Rico (Francis ND). K. anthotheca coppices poorly but it will coppice if it is not too old when it is cut. It is sensitive to competition from weeds and grass. Hoeing and cleaning are necessary.


Use #1: TIMBER
The wood weathers well and resists borers and termites. It is moderately resistant to fungal decay. The timber saws well but is inclined to be tough so sharp equipment is needed. It is a popular wood for furniture, flooring, panelling, and boat building. K. anthotheca is heavily used in Ruvuma region for furniture. Large quantities of this species have been exported from East Africa.

The bark is bitter, similar to quinine, and is used for colds. Oil from the seed is rubbed into the scalp to kill insects.

It is used as a shade tree and as a windbreak.

Previous Page Top of Page Next Page